Captain Frederick Benteen: A Fabulous Original Portrait and Lock of Hair from the Controversial Little Big Horn Figure. A colorful mixed-media portrait on paper, house in an oval patriotic frame. A defiant eagle holds in his talons a banner bearing a portrait of a fairly youthful Benteen as he appeared at the time of the 1876 battle. To his left is an American flag, to the right a wonderful 7th Cavalry standard. Best of all, to the left of his name at the bottom is a generous lock of Benteen's hair, clearly original to the piece. Condition is very good except for two clean tears in the upper right, not affecting significant design elements, which could easily be restored. The painting is in a convex form and undoubtedly was originally framed under convex glass, but the present frame, dating from the 1898-1917 era, is a replacement (Most likely the tears occurred when the original frame was broken). This portrait appears to have been derived from the 1871 image published on page 44 of James B. Klokner's The Officer Corps of Custer's Seventh Cavalry.

    To this day Benteen's name remains at the center of controversy: Could he have rescued Custer, or did he make a prudent decision which saved most of his command? To what extent did his well-known personal antipathy toward Custer affect his military judgement? The portrait offered here clearly depicts him as a hero, and with the lock of hair may well have belonged to a family member. One of the most arresting Custer/Little Big Horn-related display pieces we have offered. 16" x 23" as framed.

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    Auction Dates
    November, 2014
    8th Saturday
    Bids + Registered Phone Bidders: 1
    Lot Tracking Activity: N/A
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